I'm an insatiable reader with an eclectic taste in books. For contemporary fiction, I enjoy Michael Chabon (The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay) and Milan Kundra (The Incredible Lightness of Being); for historical function, Ian Pears (The Instance of the Fingerpost) and Umberto Eco (The Name of the Rose), for science fiction/fantasy, Grant Naylor (Red Dwarf) and Terry Pratchett (Reaper Man), for spiritual, C. S. Lewis (Mere Christianity) and Marcus Borg (The God We Never Knew), for political/critical, Jarrod Diamond (Collapse), for historical, Barbara Tuchman (A Distant Mirror), for anthropological, Joseph Campbell (The Hero With A Thousand Faces), for travel, Paul Theroux (The Happy Isles of Oceanis, a variety of biographies for entertainers (Harpo Marx, Charlie Chaplin), scientists (Richard Feynman, Thomas Edison), and statesmen and woman (Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher), plus works on science and mathematics (Fermat's last theory, string theory) and humor (Mutts, Doonsbury).
On the professional side, I subscribe to Business Week, ECN, Economist, EDN, eWeek, Information Week, InfoWorld, MSDN Journal, PC Magazine, and Science as well as ACM Queue, ACM SIGPLAN Notices, ACM Software Engineering Notes, ACM Transaction on Programming Languages and Systems, ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology, Communications of the ACM, IBM Journal of Research and Development, IBM Systems Journal, IEEE Computer, IEEE Internet Computing, IEEE Software, IEEE Spectrum, IEEE Transactions on Computers, IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, MacWorld, MIT Technology Review, Software and Systems Modeling, Software Development, and Wired. Finally, I've amassed a professional library approaching 2000 volumes, a collection that omits the disposable extended documentation that constitutes most of the stuff you'll find in bookstores and instead concentrates on the core topics of engineering software.
And yes, I've read all of most of these books, most of many of them, and the juicy bits of all the rest. It helps to 1) not require much sleep and 2) be a fast reader.
In the books section of the Handbook, you'll find a spreadsheet listing all of the books, journals, proceedings, trade magazines, and other gorp that's in my office. If you look inside, you'll find most of the classics plus some off-the-wall entries. If there's a classic/seminal reference you think I ought to read, please do let me know via email. When they finally carry me out in a box, I'll donate these works to some suitable museum or university, but for now, it's like having the assembled wisdom of many of my heroes and heroines all within reach (the Web is great, but there's nothing like curling up with a good technical book and a cat on your lap).
An extended thank you to all the writers, writers to be, and developers who are so busy building, running, and growing interesting systems such that you don't have time to write in traditional forms: I have learned so much from so many of you, and there is so much I have yet to learn and understand.
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